Tony Bellew reignited his fierce rivalry with Nathan Cleverly seconds after his fifth round stoppage of Julio Cesar Dos Santos in Liverpool.
The home favourite made his second fight at cruiserweight a successful one, following up his win over Valery Brudov in fine style, but the sparks flew outside the ring immediately after the fight.
Cleverly had earlier defeated Alejandro Valori in a fourth round stoppage on the same bill and the pair were interviewed together afterwards, with the victories pointing to a rematch between the two foes.
Welshman Cleverly successfully defended his WBO light-heavyweight title against Bellew in October 2011 before losing the belt to Russia’s Sergey Kovalev last August.
Bellew said: He knows I want to do it. He knows what I want and we can do it. I ain’t 175 (pounds) now. We both know deep down that I was dead at them scales. The tables have turned son.
I ain’t a 16-fight novice who has only fought at British title level. I am now an established pro who has fought better pros than you in lesser fights.
Let’s get this straight, I’ve achieved the same (as you). You’re a plastic world champion. You were never a true world champion. We fought for a belt that shouldn’t have even been a world title. It was no better than a domestic title. Forget that belt, forget everything. I just want to hurt you.
Cleverly was keen to engage with his old rival, coming out fighting as well.
Don’t worry about this talking. I’ve already come to his home town and beat this guy and guess what? I’m going to do it again and this time it will be in Cardiff, he said.
Keep on talking mate because I’ve already beaten you. I’m going to spank you again. I’ve already spanked you and I’m going to do it again.
Promoter Eddie Hearn gave a strong indication that the rematch would take place before the end of the year.
We’re looking at October or November, here, Manchester or London, it doesn’t matter. It’s going to be a great fight, Hearn said.